Mandy Dingle returns to Emmerdale, but where has she been? And what is she hiding?

The lowdown on Lisa Riley's reappearance

emmerdale mandy dingle (Lisa Riley)

Emmerdale welcomes Mandy Dingle home on Thursday 12th September as Lisa Riley reprises her iconic role.

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The actress is back for a longer stint than her brief reappearance in January 2019, recently revealing she was filming scenes for Christmas and beyond, and fans will no doubt enjoy having the much-loved Dingle diva back on their screens.

Bursting in unannounced on Jessie Dingle (Sandra Marvin) locking lips with sexy ex Al Chapman (Michael Wildman), Mand certainly makes an entrance as she reacquaints herself with the locals. Here’s a quick recap on what happened last time she was back, and what to expect this time around:

emmerdale mandy al jessie

When was Mandy Dingle last in Emmerdale?

After 17 years away, the loud and lairy legend made a surprise appearance as an invited guest at cousin Marlon Dingle’s wedding to Jessie in January 2019. Accompanying her was teenage son Vinny (Bradley Johnson), and the calculators were immediately out trying to ascertain whether he could be the long-lost son of ex-husband Paddy Kirk (Dominic Brunt). This turned out not be the case, but the reason mouthy Mandy returned was to deliver some big news to her old flame concerning parenthood…

What big secret was revealed when she was in Emmerdale last time?

Mandy found some old love letters from her former mother-in-law, Paddy’s mum, revealing she’d had an affair with a professional wrestler called Bear Wolf and that he may be Mr Kirk’s biological father. Paddy tracked him down and the hunch turned out to be true, and he’s now ensconced in the village with his son – all thanks to Mandy’s meddling. But that wasn’t all – as Mandy and son said their goodbyes Vinny asked his mother why she didn’t tell anyone what she really came back for, as they were driven off by a handsome stranger in a sports car…

Why has she come back?

To be honest, we’re not entirely sure, so it definitely involves the other Big Thing teased back in January she’s keeping quiet about – keep your eyes peeled for more to be revealed on that front.

As was the case nine months ago, nobody’s expecting to see Mandy when she arrives with Vinny in tow, but it soon transpires she’s homeless and needs a base for her next scam which involves a bag of stolen money and casino chips. Aaron Dingle clashes with his relative and ends up dropping the bag in a burning barrel, but does he secretly know more about whatever hustle his relative has concocted than he’s letting on?

emmerdale mandy vinnie aaron

Will she get back together with ex-husband Paddy Kirk?

Riley is resolute in assuring fans her alter ego will not be breaking up her old flame’s solid partnership with Chas Dingle (Lucy Pargeter). “That would be the most ludicrous idea ever!” she laughs. “Mandy and Paddy have a lifelong friendship, she’d never do him over. And she loves Chas like a sister.”

She will be crossing swords with another recently-reinstated fan favourite – Kim Tate, who came back in 2018 after 20 years. “The first thing Mandy says to her is, ‘Hi, Cruella!’ All their history is there, in that one line. I’d love the writers to make me and Claire King like Krystle and Alexis in Dynasty!”

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